The other day I wore ankle boots. I know. Mind blowing, right?
I had been eyeing them for months. Seeing them in all of the stores and on the feet of the people who I was quite certain were more stylish than I could ever be.
I would find a pair I liked, walk past them, turn around and come back, pick them up, study them, then hesitate. What would I wear them with? Was I cool enough to pull off the look? Would people point at me and laugh?
Finally, one day I spotted a pair that were WAAAAYYYY on clearance. I no longer could use the ‘I just don’t want to waste money on a trend’ excuse anymore. It was the moment of truth.
I hurriedly tried them on glancing around to see if anyone noticed me because I was quite certain that you aren’t supposed to wear ankle boots with yoga pants.
I took them home, set them in my closet and there they stayed for a week. I just couldn’t bring myself to actually put them on and wear them. If only I could guarantee that I would be able to pull it off. Doubts crept in and I began to wonder if I should just stay in the comfort zone of my good ol’ riding boots and running shoes with the occasional ballet flat tossed in for good measure.
But, finally the moment came where I looked at those ankle boots sitting on the floor of my closet and thought, “Today is the day!”
I may or may not have studied photos of ankle boots on Pinterest so that I could be certain I was wearing them the ‘right’ way. 😉
And then, I actually ventured out of the house in my ankle boots. I may have strutted a bit…just sayin’.
I wore them to Lowes where they totally complimented the cement floors and the copper piping I was checking out.
I wore them to WalMart where they really set off the metal grocery cart in such a fabulous way.
I wore them while I worked and I am quite certain that I accomplished so much more that day.
And I wore them to pick up the kids from school where all of the other moms gasped in shock and awe as they gazed at my ankle boots in amazement!
OK…so that part didn’t actually happen. I just have fun friends who are good sports! 😉
In fact, all of that is a gross exaggeration.
So, what DID happen? Well….to be honest…nothing.
No one even noticed them. No one. Nothing dramatic or earth shattering happened. And it wasn’t that I was really expecting that.
This whole big ‘thing’ that had filled me with anxiety, taken up space in my mind and prompted me to study a ridiculous number of photos of girls wearing skinny jeans with ankle boots on Pinterest? It all amounted to nothing.
Well, maybe not exactly nothing.
Because I had to ask myself. Why would ankle boots affect me so much?
There’s a one word answer to that question. Insecurity.
Am I cool enough?
Am I part of the ‘in’ crowd?
What will people think of me?
Am I even worthy of looking stylish?
Unfortunately, these bear a striking similarity to the questions I asked myself in middle school. Ugh. Shouldn’t I be past all of this by now?
Proverbs 16:18 says, “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall”
You see, so often we think of falling as this loud, crashing, obvious thing. Like what we might see on America’s Funniest Home Videos.
But, more often than not, the ‘falling’ that I experience isn’t quite so loud, crashing and obvious.
It’s the gentle reminder from my Heavenly Father that what I’m focusing on/obsessing over/consumed by is not what He wants for me.
You may not think of insecurity in the same category as pride. But it is.
Because they both center around one thing. Me. Me. Me.
Whether we’re puffed up and prideful and strutting around with extreme confidence or we’re wallowing in self-doubt and insecurity it all comes down to being way too consumed with ourselves and not consumed enough with God.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t want to look pretty and try out new fashion trends and feel good about ourselves. Or that it’s wrong to search Pinterest for inspiration and ideas.
I guess I’m simply saying that when something, some earthly ‘thing, takes up too much space in our minds and in our hearts it doesn’t leave space for the things of true value.
The day I wore ankle boots I was all too aware of the things of this earth. My mind was ‘set’ on them.
And, unfortunately, it’s not just ankle boots that cause that to happen.
And maybe for you it’s something else. Because we all have something, don’t we? That thing that likes to take up residence in our mind and elbow everything else out of the way.
But, here’s what I’ve found. The more I ‘set my mind on things that are above’, the more things like ankle boots take their rightful place in my mind.
The next time I wore those ankle boots they were simply shoes on my feet. I mean, they definitely looked cute and all! 😉
But, they serve a purpose.
And I want to serve mine.
My purpose of loving God and loving others.
Now, if I get to wear cute boots while doing that, well, that’s just a delightful bonus!
Blessings to you,